HONG KONG—The violent protesters opposing Occupy Central who have assaulted students and sexually harassed female protesters have ties to Beijing, according to Hongkongers.
“It is like the Cultural Revolution is taking place in Hong Kong. Your greatest fear comes from those standing next to you,” said a merchant from Shenzhen under the pseudonym Mr. Lee in an interview with Epoch Times. “Something like this shouldn’t have happened in an advanced society like Hong Kong.”
According to Lee, most of the counter-protesters spoke with a mainland Chinese accent.
The Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government had long ago organized a group of mainland Chinese to incite violence against Occupy Central, Lee said. The participants were promised one-way permits, documents that allow people from other parts of China to settle permanently in Hong Kong or Macau.
According to Lee, there are thousands of such people in Hong Kong right now.
“Many mainland Chinese aren’t really working for China from their hearts. They know what’s going on, and they are doing it for money,” said Mr. Lee.
So far, the hundreds of individuals enlisted to oppose the democracy movement Occupy Central have been dwarfed by the approximately 100,000 protesters who are dispersed in four neighborhoods around Hong Kong.
Even so, those opposing the peaceful movement have caused difficulty, beating protesters, knocking down tents, and tearing up banners.
Female protesters have been targeted by those opposing Occupy Central. One woman told Amnesty International how a man grabbed her breasts while she was standing with other protesters at Mong Kog at 4 p.m. on Oct. 3.
She said the man also assaulted two other women.
— SpyEast (@SpyEast) October 4, 2014
Some of the protesters opposing Occupy Central have been organized by the group Caring Hong Kong Power, which was established in June 2011. It was funded by the Chinese Communist Party, as previously reported by Epoch Times.
On the evening of Oct. 3, an internal directive from Caring Hong Kong Power began circulating online. It reminded people to bring blue ribbons, a symbol now associated with anti-Occupy Central demonstrators, for the activity at Mong Kok on Oct. 4.
The memo states “For the anti-Occupy Central movement and securing stability in Hong Kong, violence is necessary.”
“If the anti-Occupy Central movement does not go well, public opinion will be swayed to support police action against the students. If all else fails, the [People’s] Liberation Army will be deployed to exterminate the traitors who have betrayed China.”
— Hu Jia 胡佳 (@hu_jia) October 4, 2014
Violence broke out at Mong Kok on the afternoon of Oct. 3. Sporadic hostilities have been ongoing as counter-protesters have continued to target peaceful protesters at Mong Kok, Causeway Bay, and Admiralty.
“These are triads. I recognize their behavior, slurs, and methods. Some of them are not from Hong Kong, they are mainland Chinese,” said Tang Kam-hong, a photographer living in Hong Kong, in an article published in the French newspaper Libération, entitled “Chinese Triads back to Hong Kong.”
There has long been suspicion that the Chinese regime has tried to use violence in Hong Kong to silence those who criticize it.
Kevin Lau, former chief editor of the Ming Pao newspaper, was stabbed and slashed in the back and legs in February this year. Many in Hong Kong believe that the Chinese Communist Party was behind the attack.
Chen Ping, owner of the magazine iSun Affairs, was beaten by thugs outside of his office in June 2013. iSun Affairs is often critical of the Hong Kong administration and its ties to Beijing, “Maybe I offended a few people in the Communist Party regime,” Chen said.
Also in June last year, a car rammed into and destroyed the front gate of Jimmy Lai’s home. Lai is the founder and chairman of Next Media, Hong Kong’s largest publicly listed media company, whose publications are known to be critical of the Chinese regime. After ramming his gate, the thugs neatly placed an ax and a meat cleaver in front of it.